How being unwell lead to the launch of my health business

By Peta Shulman, GoodnessMe Box Founder

I have always been extremely driven and ambitious, which at times has been a catch twenty-two when it comes to my health. I knew from day one when I finished university that I wanted to start my own business- at the time I thought it would be opening my own PR agency!

Peta Shulman, Goodness Me BoxFive years ago, after I had stepped foot into a remarkable health and wellness PR agency with a unique opportunity for work, I found myself bed-ridden for 3 months with barely enough energy to walk to the kitchen. After seeing doctor after doctor, I was still no closer to the problem and more importantly, no closer to the cause of my illness. I was fatigued, I was unwell, and I suffered from constant headaches, muscle aches and heavy limbs. I pedaled on and told myself it was all in my mind, eventually getting well enough to start the new PR role.

The world of integrative health and wellness opened up to me – speaking to hundreds of health practitioners, attending integrative health conferences, working with the latest health foods and supplements and learning about the movement of prevention. It became clear to me that what we put in our bodies, how active we choose to be and how we manage our stress plays a fundamental role.

The problem was, my body was still breaking down each month and I wasn’t healing. Three years on, I was finally diagnosed with an autoimmune condition in 2012 when I was at my breaking point. I decided I needed to take charge of my health and be consistently mindful about the foods I was putting into my body.

Today, I have discovered a new-found energy since making positive changes to my diet and lifestyle and I’ll never look back.

Living with my close friend – who is a nutritionist – cemented the idea of GoodnessMe Box, a health food subscription box delivered monthly to help discover the latest and greatest foods on the market designed to get people excited about living well. We would share and talk about health food daily and I loved the concept of receiving health food goodies each month as a gift – surprise and delight each month! After much research and planning I discovered this concept had been successful overseas. There was no reason why it wouldn’t work in Australia- the health industry was on the cusp of booming.

Goodness Me BoxStarting a business takes time, sacrifice and energy. If I had not taken charge of my health there is no chance I would be able to have the stamina to start and continue GoodnessMe Box.

I created GoodnessMe Box to get people excited about eating clean, wholesome, natural foods and to become a part of what I like to call the ‘wellness revolution’.

My top 5 tips for anyone starting a health business

  • Understand your customer. You can’t be everything to everyone.
  • Persistence is key. You will get shut down, but you need to get back up and try again.
  • Have confidence in yourself. Your belief in your business idea is contagious to every person you meet.
  • Know your ‘why’. Your higher purpose will drive you to use your business as a vehicle for change.
  • Ask yourself “what am I passionate about and what am I good at”. These 2 factors combined should make you unstoppable.

Top 5 health and wellness tips

  • Become a savvy food shopper. Learn to read the ingredients and nutritional panel of the foods that you purchase. There are some clever marketing techniques out there so it is important we know how to ‘outsmart’ the food industry.
  • Shop for food as close to its natural state as possible and search for foods that are GMO-free. This forms our philosophy at GoodnessMe Box.
  • See a health practitioner. I am a big believer in not self-prescribing or self-diagnosing, be it with supplements or cutting out food groups. Food can be so powerful to help heal so make sure you find out what is right for your body.
  • Sleep is essential to your health and wellbeing, so don’t underestimate the value of a good nap.
  • Stress contributes to our overall health more than we realise so find your ‘me’ time to relax- whether it be meditation, walking, exercising, painting, writing etc.